Predicting Guillain-Barré syndrome in women

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Immune disorders that occur early in a woman’s life are linked to an increased risk of Guillain-Barré syndrome. Until now, it was thought that this rare neurological disorder, which causes gradual paralysis, was triggered by an infection. Our results, which appeared in the September issue of the International Journal of Epidemiology show that there are other risk factors to take into account. We found that for a population of 1,108,541 women who were pregnant at least once, the overall incidence of Guillain-Barré syndrome is 1.42 per 100,000 person-years. The incidence of the disease is six times higher in women with immune disorders, seven times higher in those with a rheumatological disorder, three times higher for transfusion and two times higher for pre-eclampsia. This research is important in identifying the early triggering factors for Guillain-Barré, knowing that the Guillemets anglaisearlier this syndrome is recognized and treated, the greater are the chances for a quick recovery.

Nathalie Auger, lead author of this study, epidemiologist and researcher at the CRCHUM

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